Construction work is one of those jobs where you might sign up for more than you bargained for, and with a relatively high hourly rate and salary for most construction-related jobs (around $16-24 per hour), it is easy to see why some people opt-in. But even with the amazing paycheck, there is the element of physical labor that makes construction work look…tiring. Even if you aren’t interested in a job in construction yourself, you might be wondering, “How hard is construction work? Can anyone do it?”
Construction Work: The Good and Great Things
As with all things, there are good, bad, ugly, and downright intolerable aspects to every single job out there.
With that in mind, construction work can be extremely rewarding for a couple of reasons:
- The pay is fantastic, especially when you have a chance to do an apprenticeship program through a union.
- Laborers may get home earlier than someone with a desk job.
- You don’t have to purchase expensive suits and ties or office wear unless you are a supervisor or a project manager. Still, the attire is much less formal than other trades and occupations.
- You aren’t cooped up and sedentary in an office all day.
- Some opportunities include film studios and sets, theme parks, and other “fun” projects.
Some people might not like the idea of getting covered in paint, grease, and dust all day, every day. Others might not like working with their hands or physically exerting themselves outdoors in extreme temperatures.
In that regard, yes, construction work is hard. How hard, though, depends on your perspective.
The Ugly Negatives of Construction Work
When someone asks “how hard is construction work?”, they are often thinking about the bad and ugly parts of the industry.
If we are discussing a laborer’s role, this could include the obscenely early hours when you work. Sometimes, you have to be at a construction site at 3:30 am, and there may be times when you do not get home from the site until late in the evening. Negatives also imply the level of danger associated with construction. Injuries happen all the time—some of them truly horrific and fatal. Not only that, be the physical demand. You cannot be weak or unskilled.
Then, we peel back the layers of other occupations within construction, such as foremen. Aside from guiding the workers, you need to be mentally aware of what is happening around you all the time. If the site isn’t managed appropriately, you could see devastating accidents occur, see dips in productivity, and so on.
As a project manager on a construction site, you are not doing as much heavy lifting or management, but you do have to figure out budgets, performance, and constantly plan. You also have to concern yourself with scheduling, profit, and balancing that with the soft skills to handle other people.
How hard is construction work? Simply put: hard. It is, without a doubt, tiring labor. But you can make it a little bit easier with the right gear. Check out some of the best work socks and work pants for construction workers. Construction can also be rewarding because, at the end of the day, you and everyone else around you made something. In some way, you contributed to the skyline or the roadway, or the betterment of a community. And, for some, that is all that matters.